Between Glengariff and Kenmare, amid old-growth forest and tumbling streams, lies an enchanted garden. Hewn from rock, trees, and sheer imagination – this is The Ewe Experience.
Kurt Lyndorf, a former war correspondent, and Sheena Wood, an artist, started the project in Goleen and moved it to this challenging spot several years ago. Their aim was twofold – to beguile and to educate and they have accomplished both in the most delightful way.
First and foremost this is a sculpture garden in which Sheena’s quirky sculptures of animals and spirits are discovered around every turn. Sometimes they are obvious, and sometimes only sharp eyes will pick out a hint of something hidden in the undergrowth. Made from discarded clothing, old tyres, fallen branches, even plastic bags, the figures are more than they seem at first glance – they carry the message of conservation and sustainability that is one of the themes of this garden.
The pathways lead up and down and meander beside a sparkling stream.
Along the way there are places to stop and play games (we spent a long time trying to beat each other at Stixs) or read snippets of verse. Information panels encourage us to think about how we interact with the natural world and how we understand it.
Children will love this place as much as adults. The photos you see here are but a tiny fraction of the ones I took on the day we visited last year, just at the end of their season. It’s open again now, and I know Sheena and Kurt spend the winter planning new installations, so you may or may not see exactly what we saw.
Prepare to be captivated!